Sunday, March 27, 2011

Where there's a will, there's a dead guy

...or at least someone who's going to be dead. Or maybe there's a lawyer? Hmmmm. This is not working out too well so far.

Some music has a purpose: emotional, political, or religious. Some music serves as a catalyst to lend power to other art forms, as movie sound tracks do. Other music just keeps me awake when I'm driving a van full of sleeping kids back from some adventure out of town. Each week people gather in churches around the world and sing hymns, some hundreds of years old. Each weekend trios in play new music in bars and cafes, while people look for other people who look better in the dark. National anthems are sung at sporting events for fans who came to see something else instead.

In almost every case music seems to be an over-elaborate waste. Not to say that the music is bad, but why have any at all? Other arts make sense. Literature can be used as a tool to record history, to analyze arguments, or to explore situations not fit for real-world application. Some aspects of visual arts allow for recording and expressing things that may be cumbersome to capture with language alone. Even engineers use drawings to specify mechanical parts. The culinary arts leverage our need to sustain ourselves physically. But what does music do? What does it help us do that we couldn't do otherwise? How does it help us to more effectively live or reproduce?

I have no idea. Moreover, I have no idea why I put time into it. In a life already packed with responsibilities, I still feel a need to carve out part of my time, our living space, and our finances to make music. The cost can be measured, but not the benefit. At the same time, I don't feel cheated. I don't want more from music than it has provided me. Perhaps it is the part of me that will keep engineering from making me completely inhuman. It will remind me that there are unquantifiables that are worthwhile. As long as music gives me goosebumps when there's no good reason to feel anything, I'll know that there's some magic to be sought and found.

So, with that, here's a short piece. Enjoy.

Rumble & Bounce by are.kay.more

1 comment:

  1. Hey! I remember this one!

    benefit=happy richard. invaluable.

    (That's invaluable as in, it has so much value that it's inconceivable, not to be confused with unvaluable)